Jennifer Dziura writes life coaching advice weekly here on TheGloss, and career coaching advice Fridays on TheGrindstone.
Please help me. I am very nearly twenty-one years old, and very nearly at the end of my undergraduate degree. Within the next month, I will have completed my exams and all but cast fate to the wind; within two months I will know the results and forever be on my merry way. The outcome is not the issue – I’m aiming for a First Class Honours, but it could also be a fail depending on the mitigation of my extenuating circumstances (my mother has been battling a brain tumour for the last year). I know I will make something of myself whatever happens, partly due to the personal strength and knowledge I have gained through reading your articles, both on The Gloss and The Grindstone.
The problem is that I am absolutely terrified to a level that I have not experienced before, and I am a pretty anxious person at the best of times. Nothing in my life is stable at the moment, I do not know if I will pass or fail, I do not know if I will have a job, I do not know where I will be living, I do not know anything. I only really became aware of my life while at university, having been somewhat oblivious to it before: I existed, but nothing more. Now I am faced with the shocking realization that I only have a certain amount of time on this earth and it is going to happen whether I am ready or not. I have never been scared of death, but it seems to have dawned on me now that I am not immortal and that my life will continue, I will grow up and grow old until I stop. While you’re at school or university, you’re still someone’s baby. Then suddenly you graduate and they make you an adult, and you can’t pretend that life isn’t happening around you anymore. It’s not that I’m not mature, or competent, I manage my finances, my studies and my health just fine, I am just terrified.
I am not certain what I’m asking you for, other than any advice that you might be able to give.
Obviously, Iâ€™ve renamed the writer after a young and ballsy (although delusional!) teenage French warrior. Letâ€™s start with this:
Look on my works, ye mighty, and despair!